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10 Talks That Will Empower Your Work

As Vincent van Gogh said, “Our days pass in working, working all the time, in the evenings we are dead beat and go off to the café, and after that, early to bed! Such is our life.”

Not anymore. The narrative of work has evolved. We’re vigilant for fulfillment, purpose, and seek to be rooted in workplaces that cultivate new skills and connections.

What story are you telling yourself about the work you do? Does it reflect complacency or possibility; a desire to explore your edges or rest in your comfort zone?

Here are 10 talks that explore topics like quitting your job, exercising play, learning from others, and more.


1. Do What You Love by Ben Chestnut, CreativeMornings/Atlanta

Ben speaks on quitting your job to do what you love, the history of the company, and what he does to cultivate the infamous MailChimp culture.

I kind of like “love what you do” better. Wherever you are just be good at it, embrace it, love it. Eventually success will find you.

2. Love Work by Aisha Fukushima, CreativeMornings/Oakland

In this talk, Aisha encourages you to find a focus for LOVE WORK – ideal work that feeds your soul, energizes you every day even with the challenges that come with it. LOVE WORK is composed of what makes you profoundly happy and what you are passionate about.

For me, it was the ability to really connect and think critically about the world around us. And not telling people what to think, but encouraging us to question.

3. Thinking Backwards by Seth Godin, CreativeMornings/NewYork

Best-selling author and founder of altMBA, Seth Godin, believes that our narrative of work is all backwards. Rather than doing big things, we should do small things; rather than doing work that’s pretty, we ought to be work that’s important.

I have no doubt that the people in this room are going to succeed - the question is, are you going to matter?

4. People & Places of Play by Karyn Lu, CreativeMornings/Atlanta

At Turner Broadcasting, Karyn Lu oversees the Insights & Inspiration team, keeping the brand current and encouraging them to experiment, take risks, and innovate.

In her work, she scours for patterns and trends that Turner can implement. One of the biggest trends she’s discovered lately is play. She speaks on a few examples she has found and how she brought it to the company.

Make your passions known because when you do that, then everybody becomes your advocate.

5.Doing Your Best Work by Nick Campbell, CreativeMornings/Chicago

In this talk, Nick talks about doing your best work, the necessity to avoid being the smartest person in the room, and why learning from others is paramount.

Don’t be the best one in the room. Go be somewhere where you can learn from other people.

6. Catapulting Chance Into Your Stupid Head by Lulu Miller, CreativeMornings/DC

Lulu Miller is an NPR Science Desk Reporter where she covers human (and occasionally insect) behavior. She shares her lessons on crafting remarkable stories by accommodating chance in your creative process.

Productivity equals a huge idea and not enough time to do it.

7. From Ansel Adams to Macklemore: Grit, Guts, Gumption and the Art of More by Chase Jarvis, CreativeMornings/Seattle

Photographer and entrepreneur, Chase Jarvis, speaks on the art of more: making more work and putting more out there, why that’s the bravest thing you can be doing, and also the most rewarding.

Creativity is the new literacy.

8. Working in the Age of Distraction by Jocelyn K. Glei, CreativeMornings/LosAngeles

Jocelyn is a writer who’s obsessed with how we can find more creativity and meaning in our daily work. In this talk, she encourages us to take a hard look at how often we’re distracted, how that undermines our workflow and saps our most valuable resource: time.

You must say NO to opportunities, in order to say YES to your priorities.

9. Purpose is the New Bottom Line by Casey Gerald, CreativeMornings/NewYork

In this talk, Casey shares his humble beginnings in starting MBAs Across America and how purpose fueled his endeavor, regardless of the constraints that stood in his way. His talk will empower you to give a damn about the ideas that you believe in, and to act on them—now.

It’s not the what or the how, but it’s the WHY, that is at the heart of creative entrepreneurs. It’s the WHY that sparks the revolution.

10. Grab the Reins and F*cking Do It by Jessica Hische, CreativeMornings/Vancouver

Jessica seduced a packed house with her enthusiasm and colorful language, sharing personal perspectives on the importance of typography as an example of the intersection of art and technology.

I really love to punch web designers in the face who refuse to learn html and css, because if I’m a letterer and can learn to do it myself in six months for a thing that’s completely unrelated to my career, I just think it’s lazy if you don’t learn yourself.

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